Colombian Vice President Angelino Garzon said Monday that doctors overseeing his recovery from a stroke in June have detected a small cancer in his prostate gland.
It is a "microscopic, non-aggressive cancerous tumor" for which he must undergo radiation therapy, the 66-year-old vice president said in a statement.
"I can't cling to the office of vice president and even less fall in love with it," he said, adding that "I'm fully aware that I must leave up to the constitution and the law everything related to the present and future of the vice president of Colombia."
Garzon announced that he has prostate cancer following a discussion with the Senate, which insisted that he have a medical examination to see if he is capable of replacing President Juan Manuel Santos, who recently underwent surgery for a tumor in his prostate.
The vice president said his cancer is not life-threatening and that he has begun a course of 39 radiation sessions.
Garzon was hospitalized in June for a urinary infection, but suffered a stroke during the treatment that had him in a coma for several days and which he survived with certain difficulties of his motor functions.
In his statement the vice president admitted that he is going through "a very tough moment in my life" with his health issues and those of his wife, Monserrat Muñoz, who last month had a cancerous kidney removed.
Santos was operated for prostate cancer on Oct. 4 in Bogota, and three days later went home to the presidential residence.